“There is no exercise better for the heart than reaching down and lifting people up.”
Helping others provides a feeling like none other. Four years ago, I ventured out of my comfort zone and learned the feeling of helping others. When I was scared and closed minded to aiding others in need; I knew I had to be brave and face my fears. I had to insert myself into a situation were I would learn how to help others. My family’s church, four years ago, started participating in a program that provided temporary housing and education for homeless families in need. My family and I found this program quite interesting and we decided to participate. We began to go to our church every three weeks to provide food, blankets, and company. My first time participating in the program was a very moving experience for me. It was Sunday night; my brother and I were sitting in the chapel of our church awaiting the arrival of the family. My parents and a couple other members of the church were scrambling in the kitchen trying to prepare the food. They were talking about the family’s story and my brother and I happened to overhear them. The family’s story was quite devastating and I was quite taken back by it all. When the family arrived my brother and I buddied up with a six-year-old boy, we spent the whole night playing tag, telling jokes, and most importantly: laughing and smiling. The feeling of helping a person in need was truly incredible and as the night concluded I got a sense of what life was really like away from my home. I realized that the life I posses is truly a blessing and is quite unrealistic. Most kids aren't fed a home cooked meal every night, treated to adventures abroad, and most importantly, not all kids have a roof to protect them. I decided right then and there that I was going to make the ultimate stride to help others. For me, it only matters that I discovered the feeling of helping others and I know how important it is to be grateful for what you have in life.
The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams.
Fight hard, but always remember to fight for what you believe in. This summer I discovered the power of fighting hard for your opinions and beliefs. Working on a political campaign was the perfect way to express my beliefs. This summer, my brother Harry occupied his time in a hot office surrounded by paper work, ringing phones, and sometimes his brother. He was campaigning for Maura Healy, a candidate for Massachusetts Attorney General. At the beginning of August, I began to participate in the campaign and soon after, I loved every moment. I started committing lots of my time to Maura and began to convince others that she was the right choice for Attorney General. One Saturday afternoon, there was a phone-banking event at the campaign. People came from all over Massachusetts to support Maura and my brother and I were in charge in seeing that everyone had a script that showed them what to say. When there were no longer people to be given scripts, I decided to make some calls of my own. I found a corner just for myself and began dialing number after number. Each time I hung up the phone after talking to a complete stranger and checked the tiny box that said: yes, voting for Maura. I felt as if I was doing a great dead for society. The work I put into the campaign was never easy and sometimes I wanted nothing more than to kick my feet up and enjoy a nice cold lemonade. I never did, however, and I’m so grateful that I didn’t because the feeling of satisfaction I received after long days at the campaign was worth it. The completion of something you had to work for is satisfaction in itself, but when you work hard for something you believe in, there is no better feeling. When I crash into bed after a long and tiring day, I think back to the muggy summer nights in the middle of August, when I was campaigning for Maura. I feel accomplished and pleased with myself. It would be hard to live without personal beliefs, because fighting for them is what lets me sleep every night.
This is Maura's campaign video
Your assumptions are your windows on the world. Scrub them off every once in a while, or the light won't come in.”
― Isaac Asimov
Assumptions cause unnecessary emotions. They cause grief, but also provide moments of delight. When you first learn of something negative, a chain of events occurs within your mind. My mind has the power to turn words into something real. You could hear friends talking about something, and suddenly, in your mind, it could become real. Two years ago my parents were struggling with a decision. My father had been offered a very prestigious position in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, and he did not know if he should take it. At the time I had no awareness of the situation. One evening, while at my grandparents’ house, I was walking past my grandparents’ bedroom and, I overheard my mom talking to my grandmother about houses in Pittsburgh. Usually I would have not thought twice about my mother’s remark, but over the last couple of weeks both my mom and dad had traveled to Pittsburgh on various occasions and neither of them had ever traveled there before. I decided to not question my mom, but I began to think, and I began to assume the worst. I told my brother and started to panic that if my worst fear of having to move came true; I would no longer be connected to my closest friends. I was almost one hundred percent sure I was moving that day, and my parents had not even told me anything. The grief and anxiety I experienced over the next couple of days were all a result of an assumption. My parents ended up telling my brother and I that we were not moving. That night as I laid in bed, I thought of the stress I had created for myself. I ended up making a pact with myself. I decided to never assume the worst and try and stay calm. This pact lasted for no more than a week, but I’m glad that I still make assumptions because every single time I make something small into something large, I notice it and I try and do better the next time. As life blows by, it is only human for one to assume, but an overdose of assumptions can cause your life much harm.
“A mind is like a parachute. It doesn't work if it is not open.” -Frank Zappa
Keeping an open mind allows you see the world from many perspectives. When you close your mind to others in a condescending way, you become stuck in your way of thinking and are deprived of seeing the world from other points of view. When I went to Windsor Mountain, I became aware of my bad habit of thinking my ideas are the strongest. When my group and I would tackle an obstacle course, I found others to have many good ideas to approach the problem at hand and I began to see holes in my strategy and saw the need for an open mind. During an activity called Initiatives, my group and I were given the task of turning a tarp over while all six of us were standing on it. I began to strategize, but by the time I had decided on a course of action, my group had already started. We were able to complete the activity with no issues, but then I came to realize that my plan had been flawed and if we had used it we would have run into many problems. This activity opened my mind to the fact that others often have good ideas, but I have been too closed minded to realize. Now that I am aware of my way of thinking, I hope to change.
Hi! I’m Sam Breault! I’m 15 and I attend the Fenn school.